Who says a Lower East Side subway rider can’t get profiled by the internet’s oldest nature magazine? An interview with me at Terrain!

Lost Stories: An Interview with Laurie Gwen Shapiro

I met Laurie Gwen Shapiro in Northern California one fall evening. In a cozy courtyard on the University of California-Berkeley campus, I was chatting with an editor from The New Yorker when, mid-conversation, we got interrupted by a dark-haired woman.

When I learned she was writing about a teenager who stowed away on a 1928 expedition to the Antarctic, I forgave her interruption. I love a good adventure story to remote places, and the unbelievable tale of how teenager Billy Gawronski jumped into the Hudson River to sneak aboard Rear Admiral Richard Byrd’s ship triggered my imagination.

Read the full interview here

My Interview with the Forward

How A Teenage ‘Shabbos Goy’ Stowed Away On America’s First Antarctic Exploration

Teenagers dream about running away. They always have; they likely always will; often, when they do, the results are decidedly weird. (See: Haight-Ashbury circa the 1960s.)

But there’s packing a knapsack and setting out for the Summer of Love, and then there’s swimming across a major river intending to hitch a ride on a boat to Antarctica. In August of 1928, Billy Gawronski, the son of Polish Catholic immigrants, a Yiddish-speaking former “Shabbos goy” and a library-frequenting fan of adventure tales, did just that.

Read the interview at the Forward

Thrilled to be interviewed by Jonathan Capehart at WNYC

One Teenager’s Adventure from Queens to Antarctica in 1928

Laurie Gwen Shapiro talks about her new book The Stowaway: A Young Man’s Extraordinary Adventure to AntarcticaShe tells the story of Billy Gawronski, a first generation New York City high schooler in 1928 desperate to escape a dreary future in the family upholstery business, who jumped into the Hudson River and stowed away on a ship bound for an expedition to Antarctica.

Hear the interview at WNYC.org

Excited to be interviewed at Shelf Awareness, one of my favorite literary online sites

Laurie Gwen Shapiro: An Antarctic Adventure

Laurie Gwen Shapiro is a fiction writer, award-winning documentary filmmaker and journalist whose writing has appeared in New York magazine, Slate, the Forward and the Los Angeles Review of Books, among others. In The Stowaway: A Young Man’s Extraordinary Adventure to Antarctica (just published by Simon & Schuster), her first foray into book-length nonfiction, Shapiro recounts the true story of Billy Gawronski, a scrappy and determined teenager growing up in 1920s New York who sneaks onto a ship bound for the southernmost continent.

Read the full interview at shelf-awareness.com